Would You Actually Date Someone Who Lives Abroad?


As international dating grows ever more popular, we must talk citizenship! Or should we?

There are certain stigmas that surround international dating, many making the assumption that relationships that have resulted from international dating don’t last, because one is simply interested in obtaining legal residency.  As a singleton I’ve often thought about going back to the homeland Ghana to find a match. However, I always end up getting put off for one reason or another. I always ask myself:

Do long distance relationships actually work?

It’s nothing we haven’t heard before; one of the main obstacles that could hinder the course of love is distance. Being apart from your partner can be extremely challenging, although it’s not impossible to maintain a long-distance relationship, we know that there is much more planning needed to keep the relationship going. Making sure you plan times to call and catch up, planning web chats, and planning visits all contribute to making the relationship work.

Can I really be bothered with all the Chinese whispers going on behind my back?? Answer: No!

“Why couldn’t she get anyone over here?” “You know he is only after one thing…” (We will come back to this later).
I know that this kind of chat shouldn’t really bother me, but the thought of constant gossip and the feeling I need to explain and defend my decision just irritates me. I have no time.. Many people will say they are only interested in perusing a foreign counterpart, because it improves their standard of living. There may be some merit to this, but is there really anything wrong with that? Don’t we all want to better our lives?

One of the myths around long distance relationships is that they are always or more likely to fail than other kinds of relationships. Is this true though?

Absence can create serious feelings of insecurity and paranoia, yes, but I don’t consider myself to be the jealous type. However, I’m sure the added distance would make me ask more questions and be more suspicious. It’s just the way we are built, right? If you are not seeing someone on a regular basis and knowing their movements, we are going to be a little more wary and cautious.

Let’s be 100% – love ain’t cheap. Even if you only live a few hours away, the greater the distance, of course, the larger the transportation bill. Have I really got the finances to see it through? At the end of the day, is it all going be worth it? What if it all goes tits up and I’ve invested so much in to it?

We all like a bit of under-the-sheets action (and as much as possible thank you very much!) Thanks to technology, we can decide to get by with phone sex, erotic Skype sessions, and FaceTime. But does that really cut the mustard until the next time we meet?

Then finally the biggest issue for me personally is the big ‘C’.. Citizenship!

I read a post recently, which was circulated on Facebook (still trying to find it), about why women should be more open to starting a relationship with someone without citizenship. The overall message was that at a certain age you should be open to any kind of relationship that comes your way, and that we women should not be concerned about whether or not a guy only wants to marry for papers – at least you’re off the market and in a relationship.

We asked our session guests if they would start a relationship with someone from a outside the country. The view was mixed; some of the ladies point blank refused, stating that the foundation of trust would not be there, and that once the other person gets what they want – the stay in the UK – they would soon disappoint and leave. Another point was that the cultural differences and demands that they would bring would put additional strains on the relationship. It was the men of the group who said that they had no issue with it, and would happily enter into a relationship.

So why is citizenship such a big factor for me? Simple – I don’t want to be taken for a ride. I’m not about to have ‘Johnny Just Come’ arrive and unnecessarily mess up my life. I know this paints a very negative stereotype to an already sensitive subject, and I know there are cases where it has worked, but I feel I need to be extra cautious.

My personal view is that these relationships are harder to maintain. When Aunty says, “I will introduce you to someone,” my initial thoughts are, “Please let them be based here in the UK, and please let them have their papers!!”  Followed by, “Are they able to work properly without papers? Life will be about constantly looking over our shoulders, waiting for the Home Office to catch up with us. Possible deportation hangs overs us both!” The burden of breaking the law in this way would be forever be playing on my mind. Living in a vulnerable situation, with the knowledge that on any given day this could happen, I’m sure can be brutally stressful. Is this life???

My friend told me of one particular woman who had started a relationship with a guy, and she knew from the start that he did not have the indefinite leave to remain in the country. Even though they had not been dating that long, she decided it was worth the risk to help him get his stay. He helps with the kids, he helps her financially when she’s in need, he works, and she truly seems to love him, and he loves her. Yes this is a great example, and you can only wish them the best like you would do any relationship. But let’s face it – these are few and very far between.

I believe the most important thing in a relationship is trust. Do you trust that he /she would love just as much if you didn’t have to worry about citizenship? Be honest with yourself.  If you’re compromising for him/her in a way that makes you feel uncomfortable, just know that you might regret it later.

I, for one, won’t say no to international dating, but believe me – it will only happen because of love. With international dating I say: don’t knock it till you’ve tried it!


Nefertiti LDN

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